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-   -   Remington R12/VersaMax Tactical (http://glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1440047)

MarkCO 08-28-2012 10:31

Remington R12/VersaMax Tactical
 
There is not a thread on this new platform so I figured I would start one.

The Remington VersaMax operating system has several unique features. First off, it is very similar to the Benelli M4. In facts, many parts are interchangeable, including the trigger group. The barrel/chamber has gas ports that direct variable gas (based on shell length) to two barrel mounted chambers that house short stroke pistons for the operation. The pistons don't have rings, or seals or any of the other little parts that foul gas-gun shotguns. They can be ghost loaded and the chambered shell can be removed, or replaced, without releasing a shell from the tube.

The R12 comes from Remington Defense and has two versions: 18" with 6+1+1 capacity and 14" with 4+1+1 capacity. Fixed or ProBore chokes, rifle or Ghost ring sights, pistol grip or straight stock, standard or railed fore end. Chambered for 3.5" shells, can run those and 2.75" and 3" through the self-regulating system with no user input

The VersaMax Tactical is really set-up for 3Gun and has a 22" Pro-Bore choke in a vent rib barrel with a FO front and brass mid-bead. It is an 8+1+1 with an oversized charging handle, safety and bolt release. While is still has the 3.5" receiver, it is rated as a 3" barrel.

All three came form the sporting VersaMax which are 4+1+1 in 26" and 28" barrels.

I have a new Tactical that I am evaluating and so far, I am very impressed... sure shoots soft!

Whatcha think? Boom or bust? Replacement of the M4 or no way?

aippi 08-29-2012 09:01

Thanks for the first decent post in weeks on here.

I am a Remington LE Armorer and will be going back to recertify to the factory in April and will have questions about this weapon. I anticipte they will be including it in the course only if they are going to consider it part of the LE line of weapons. I have no knowledge of it as of this time and can not find a schematic to see the operating system. If there is an action spring in the stock as in the 1100 and the 11-87 then it is going to have the same issue thoses weapons have and I would no recommend it for defense. However, if Remington has discovered some way to make their gas semi-autos reliable then this model may find a place. I have no faith in Remington to accomplish this and find they simply build on mistakes and count on Marketing to pass mess on to unsuspecting buyers. The 887 is proof of that statement. Hope I am wrong but I will not know till I get to Ilion and get the real deal through the smoke screen of marketing.

rigger7 09-04-2012 05:10

What I would like to know is when they are going to make this available for individual purchase and if the stock can be shortened 12"-13" would be nice.

aippi 09-04-2012 12:13

Anyone can buy one. The Only Remington shotgun restricted is the MCS. However, I would tell anyone to wait and see. Let others be the test dummies and find out if this thing is going to have any benifit. I can already see they have put a bunch of tactic-fool mess on it. Stuff like the Remington Extended Tactical Joke does nothing but add length to the weapon. It is a cyl bore choke and the patterns from it are horrible. Not a deal closer if you want this weapon as any Rem Choke tubes will fit. If an action spring in the stock is envolved then it will prove as unreliable as all Remington gas guns for a fighting gun but can be a serious competion weapon.

Waiting to see if this thing proves worthy before putting down $1,200 plus is a wise choice. Gun safes are full of the latest greatest thing and a lot of buyer regrets out there. Time is the test and those who have them will put real live range time on them in the 3 gun events and other places. That is the test when it is in the hands of the end user. Remingtons track record with new stuff is dismal at best as Freedom Group has been a game changer since they required Remington and the name of the game is loosing market share and negatively affecting a Great American Gun Company. I hope this thing is a winner and helps to turn things around for Remington. I have to hope that as my business is based on the Remington Shotguns.

MarkCO 09-22-2012 09:12

J.D., the ProBore choke is NOT the same as the RemChoke. ProBore is a newer choke design that Briely designed. It is in the VM, CTi, and some of the higher end 1100s.

glockenturm 09-26-2012 22:07

Just looked at the PDF of the owner's manual, and the action spring is in the stock.

How does this affect reliability for a fighting shotgun?

aippi 09-27-2012 12:25

The force of the piston coming rearward forces the breech bolt to the rear and ejects the spent shell. There is a link behind the breech bolt into an action spring and that spring compacts inside a tube that is in the rear stock. It has to store enough energy to send the breech bolt back home to pick up the next round and lock into battery.

Shotguns are not rifles and the gas pressure is very different so it takes most all the pressure that enters the gas orifices to cycle a Remington Gas Operated shotgu. They have to be fired from a solid shoulder so all the energy compacts the action spring. If you hip fire, snap fire or try to fire these weapons any way but solid shoulder and stance they may not cycle. You don't get to choose a stance in a gun fight. You may need to fire over or around cover and these weapon are not reliable enough for this type of use.

So, if they have somehow figured a way to get this new model to work differently I would be interested in finding out. I will come Spring when I return to the factory in Ilion for recertification. They are pushing this as a Tactical Model and that means useing in defence against human threats. I hope they go it right somehow.

MarkCO 09-28-2012 11:25

Mine has been fired from a variety of unsupported positions, with very light loads and has functioned 100%. 2 3/4 dram loads from the hip make every stock auto-loading shotgun I know of malfunction, except this one. It functions when an M2 Benelli won't! The operating system is significantly different from previous Remington systems.

Kilrain 09-28-2012 12:25

Quote:

Originally Posted by aippi (Post 19461457)
They have to be fired from a solid shoulder so all the energy compacts the action spring. If you hip fire, snap fire or try to fire these weapons any way but solid shoulder and stance they may not cycle. You don't get to choose a stance in a gun fight. You may need to fire over or around cover and these weapon are not reliable enough for this type of use.

Interesting. This sounds exactly like the issue that some recoil only operated guns like the Benelli experience on occasion. I've never heard of a gas gun having this issue or "requiring" a solid shoulder or particular stance. Now, low base, practice type shells, those I've seen cause issues with both gas and recoil guns..........

:dunno:

aippi 09-28-2012 12:25

Markco - great to hear that. I am hoping since they have made this model part of the new Remington Defence line of weapons that we will be working on them when I return to Ilion for recertification. I love my 11-87P and it is my favority shotgun to shoot but it lives in my safe and I would never take it to a fight. Remington has needed a reliable semi-auto shotgun and from what you say they found one.

Kilrain - we first expirenced the issue in the early 80's when the state bought us the Sidewinder Tactical 1100's. We had a drill where we stand behind cover and stick the weapon out in front of us and using the wall to line it up we lay down covering fire so team members could move across a open hall or allyway. One shot and then nothing. As a drill simulating that you are down and with the weapon across your chest you fire up at a threat closing on you. Again, one shot and nothing. They will just not cycle unless from a solid shoulder solid stance. It is just like limp wristing a 1911. Same exact principle. We hoped the 11-87P would be different but were greatly disapointed. I get my knowledge from expirience and from sitting in class at Ilion. I get real tickeled when this topic comes up and guys post how their 11-87P cycles everything from slugs to target loads. Knowing of course these weapon will not means I just have to laugh and move on to the next post.

Kilrain 09-28-2012 12:56

Quote:

Originally Posted by aippi (Post 19464707)
Kilrain - we first expirenced the issue in the early 80's when the state bought us the Sidewinder Tactical 1100's. We had a drill where we stand behind cover and stick the weapon out in front of us and using the wall to line it up we lay down covering fire so team members could move across a open hall or allyway. One shot and then nothing. As a drill simulating that you are down and with the weapon across your chest you fire up at a threat closing on you. Again, one shot and nothing. They will just not cycle unless from a solid shoulder solid stance. It is just like limp wristing a 1911. Same exact principle. We hoped the 11-87P would be different but were greatly disapointed. I get my knowledge from expirience and from sitting in class at Ilion. I get real tickeled when this topic comes up and guys post how their 11-87P cycles everything from slugs to target loads. Knowing of course these weapon will not means I just have to laugh and move on to the next post.

I get the idea, I've just not seen it firsthand. I reckon in the end most any self loading firing can be coerced into some type of action-based malfunction by poor or unstable handling.

aippi 09-28-2012 18:02

The worst off these is the 11-87P because the gas orifices are sized for heavy loads. Even solid shoulder solid stance they will not cycle lighter loads consistantly.

My daughter is 5'2" and 116 and my was having cycling issues with my 11-87P because of her size. It was not shooter error as Sgt. Jessica McGuire USMCR knows weapons, grew up shooting them and qualified Expert in the Corp. The kid just did not have enough bulk to get this weapon to work consitantly. I got her leaning into it and most of the issues resloved but being a dumb Jar Head like her dad she had to pull the trigger as fast as she could so getting rocked back by round 5 or 6 she would have a failure and that was with 00 as that is all I shoot in it.

If this new tacitcal can get it done I anticipate a renewed intrest in semi-auto Remington in the LE market. Each time I have been to Ilion the Instructors ask the class if any of their departments use the 11-87P and not a single hand has ever went up.

MarkCO 10-27-2012 11:27

Update
 
Well, now that I have a lot more ammo downrange, I can report on the VM from a more informed position.

First, reliabilty is still at 100%, even with anemic underpowered loads intermixed with 3" magnum slugs. The operating system is just silly reliable. Shouldered, unshouldered, hip, etc...like the energizer bunny.

Second, 3" v. 3.5" Some have reported being able to chamber and shoot 3.5" shells in the 3" tacticals. Well folks, I think they are nuts. Of course a 3" shell fits in a 2 3/4' chamber, and a 3.5" fits in a 3" chamber...does not mean it is supposed to. A question I hope aippi can ask in Armorer's class to get an official answer. On the shell stop/ bolt release lever, there are two springs, a small one nested in the larger outer one. The small one, in the Tacticals, can be removed since it is really there for the 3.5" shells. This aids in loading.

Third, slug accuracy is great out to 100 yards. I was able to go 9 for 9 with three different slugs on a 10" plate at 50 yards. The mid-bead and front fiber are NOT conducive to accuracy so I'll be adding a 10/22 or Lyman fold down in a milled rib dovetail in the next week or so. The bolt on rear sight did shrink my 100 yard group sizes down to 5". BUT, the three hinge points and clamp do affect POI. Remington Execs and sponsored shooters used a one-piece tube that I strongly encouraged Nordic to produce. I've got one of the original prototypes, but they are not yet in production. The one piece tube fixes the only two gripes I have with the VM, the potential for feed failures when hanging on a hinge point with higher recoiling rounds and the POI shift due to the clamp.

I am more and more impressed with the platform everytime I handle it. Feel free to toss any questions out.

aippi 10-27-2012 11:38

Very well written and positive range report and of more value to me then some magazine writer who needs to spin the product. It looks like Remington may have come up with a semi-auto that can be taken to a gun fight. I still want more from the guys who own these weapons. I can also bet it will be the buzz in the next armorers class and if Remington has intentions of adding it to their LE line I will get to tear one up and that is where I learn where the Dog *****s and the Cat burries it.

MarkCO 10-27-2012 11:45

J.D. you have seen this I assume? http://www.remingtonmilitary.com/Fir...0Auto/R12.aspx

That is supposedly the LE/Mil variant, which I have not shot.

If you have anything you want me to try/test, just let me know. I have a small flock of them I am working on.

MarkCO 11-08-2012 07:21

One Piece Mag tube
 
I now have a few of the one piece tubes. http://i853.photobucket.com/albums/a...rdonepiece.jpg

The tube pictured above takes the 22" VM tactical from 8+1+1 to 9+1+1.

I've been testing a few shotguns with heavy buckshot and slugs using a factory tube and the one piece tube. The results have been favorable. This simplification is probably not "necessary" but it keeps POI from shifting if the shotgun is disassembled and makes the tube less prone to failure and flex at the hinge points. The other methodology involves a lot of work and epoxy and precision. I am not sure if Remington will see the need for this on the R12, however, a one piece tube, if done for both the benefit and cost savings could reduce assembly and manufacturing costs slightly.

MarkCO 11-13-2012 09:41

I ran another couple hundred rounds through the Versa-Max shotguns on Friday.

First, I did a test. I shot one slug at a time, 5 times each after a field strip from the totally stock 22" tactical. Then I put the one piece tube on and again shot one round at a time with field strips in between. Took about an hour to shoot 10 slugs with 9 field strips and reassemblies. Standard IPSC target, B&P low recoil slugs, POA top of "A", 45 yards, off-hand.

Stock VM 5 slugs group.
http://i853.photobucket.com/albums/a...ktubeSlugs.jpg

One piece tube group.
http://i853.photobucket.com/albums/a...PieceSlugs.jpg

mythree 11-25-2012 11:00

Well I'm currently scouring my vendors for an R12 when I find one and procure it I will post a range report with pic's -

Big Bird 11-26-2012 19:48

I spent the weekend in a duckblind with a fellow who was using a Versamax. He was the odd man out... 8 other Benelli's in the blind ;) But his shotgun didn't have any problems running though I don't think it took the two total submersions in 2 feet of Arkansas rice field muck that my SBE II did.. (My dog is young and enthusiastic and still is learning manners in the duck blind). The Benelli never missed a beat and I didn't bother to clean it until I got home on Monday.

In any case..his gun has been reliable for him and I saw no issues. Seemed like a nice enough shotgun. Didn't make me want to sell my Benelli though.

MarkCO 11-26-2012 20:28

Big Bird...

Shotguns are like women, they all have the same basic parts and look about the same, it is how they perform when you really need it that makes you smile...or not.

MarkCO 11-27-2012 12:50

Just an FYI, the Sportsman model, with cheaper sights and a basic stock is supposed to be out in time for Christmas...street price is looking to be about $750. The Turkey is supposed to follow, good sights but the less expensive stock...street price of about $850. They all share the same receiver, bolt and piston system.

MarkCO 01-03-2013 18:05

The Sportsman models are now available. The Turkey is just around the corner.

There might be some more models in the works, but can't say more than that.

MarkCO 01-23-2013 09:49

More models out and more coming. I was contacted by Remington and have sent them some ideas and parts for a new model which I am very excited about, but I can't spill the beans.

My original VM ran 1250 rounds, out of the box, no lube, no cleaning, no failures of any kind. I am aware of one VM that would not run some of the lighter loads, but it is on the way back to Remington and they are taking care of it. Will get back the details when the owner reports back. The one I have set up for 3Gun took all the mods at once (usually not a great idea), put back together and ran 100 rounds of a highly mixed bag (2.5 dram 2.5" at 950 fps, to 2 ounce magnum 3" loads at 1650 fps) with no malfunctions or any kind.

jrd22 01-23-2013 10:50

I've had a Versa Max (hunting version) for about a year now. Mostly shoot clays with it, light target loads and some pheasant hunting. I've put a couple thousand rounds through it. The only issue I had was when I switched to some high velocity hunting shells after a lot of target loads. It ejected but the brass on the shell was damaged/dented. Remington said to soak the ports with cleaning solvent for about 15 minutes and thoroughly clean the pistons (which I hadn't done for a long time). That solved the problem and it's been totally reliable since. Four rounds as fast as you can pull the trigger is no problem.

MarkCO 02-13-2013 15:42

So the one VM that was having trouble split the chamber (for the pistons) at the spot where it is brazed onto the barrel. It happened early on and it still ran 3 1/4 dram and heavier loads even while it was broken. With two chambers and two pistons, even if one breaks, it still runs.


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